Author: Heather Blatt

Reorienting the narrative of digital media studies to incorporate the medieval, Participatory reading in late-medieval England traces affinities between digital and medieval media to explore how participation defined reading practices and shaped relations between writers and readers in England’s literary culture from the late-fourteenth to early sixteenth centuries. Traditionally, print operates as the comparative touchstone of both medieval and digital media, but Participatory reading argues that the latter share more in common with each other than either does with print. Working on the borders of digital humanities, medieval cultural studies, and the history of the book, Participatory reading draws on well-known and little-studied works ranging from Chaucer to banqueting poems and wall-texts to demonstrate how medieval writers and readers engaged with practices familiar in digital media today, from crowd-sourced editing to nonlinear apprehension to mobility, temporality, and forensic materiality illuminate. Writers turned to these practices in order to both elicit and control readers’ engagement with their works in ways that would benefit the writers’ reputations along with the transmission and interpretation of their texts, while readers pursued their own agendas—which could conflict with or set aside writers’ attempts to frame readers’ work. The interactions that gather around participatory reading practices reflect concerns about authority, literacy, and media formats, before and after the introduction of print. Participatory reading is of interest to students and scholars of medieval literature, book, and reading history, in addition to those interested in the long history of media studies.

Four Conversations with Canadian Communications Officers
Dominique Marshall

digital media, her team finds that Twitter lends itself better to infographics illustrating tips, Instagram to longer texts, TikTok to more spontaneous and less polished images. Website and social media, in general, call for more infographics in order to communicate complex information. The communications personnel of humanitarian agencies has changed accordingly: the CRC national communications team now includes a graphic designer; WUSC also employs a graphic designer, as well as a new ‘digital engagement officer’; MCoS actively supports current workers to develop

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
An Interview with Rainer Schlösser, Spokesperson of the Association of the Red Cross Museums in Germany (Arbeitsgemeinschaft der deutschen Rotkreuz-Museen)
Sönke Kunkel

but has a wider mission that has grown over time. SK: Let us talk about the specific visual mediality of the museum. How can museums compete with television documentaries or the newest history short film put out on YouTube? RS: I think one of the strongpoints of a museum is that it allows a direct, aesthetic encounter with the visual material object itself. That’s something that digital media, photography, or television cannot make up for. When I see on display an original letter written and sent by Henry Dunant, then I know that this concrete material letter

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Mel Bunce

disinformation and help users navigate the digital media environment’ ( European Commission, 2018 ). More broadly, we need to focus curricula on critical thinking and reasoning. Recent interventions have shown this can be massively beneficial to students’ ability to discern opinion and anecdote from scientific evidence. In 2016, researchers ran a huge trial involving 10,000 schoolchildren in 120 primary schools in Kampala, Uganda. The results, recently published in The Lancet ( Semakula et al ., 2017 ), show that children who were taught

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
1980–2000
Dominique Marshall

of digital media, in the current offerings of the NFB, and within the later practice of the photographers involved. The Purpose of CIDA Development Education in Schools From its creation in 1968, CIDA engaged the public in multiple ways: by offering financial support to Churches and NGOS who sent young volunteers abroad or visited community associations and schools, by sponsoring the preparation of materials on the developing world for adult education, and by designing partnerships from its ‘NGO program’ especially to create learning centers across the

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Visual Advocacy in the Early Decades of Humanitarian Cinema
Valérie Gorin

Introduction When looking at the history of visual humanitarianism, one surprisingly realizes that film history has only scarcely been covered, while scholarly interest has increased in humanitarian campaigns on digital media ( Cottle and Cooper, 2015 ). Yet, debates that emerged in the 1980s about the paradigm of distant suffering, immersion and chronotopic engagement by means of communication technologies, such as virtual reality, remain to be examined through historical patterns. In the age of mass communication, aid agencies turned very early to motion

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Reading practices and participation in digital and medieval media
Heather Blatt

? And what did their participation achieve for themselves or others? Introduction 3 The context: reading, participation, and agency The central subject of this project thus focuses on participation, a concept for which I am indebted to digital media studies. Perhaps because of the autobiographical self-interest of a writer raised in a print-centric culture but currently inhabiting a culture impacted by a new technology of writing and reading technology, I find great interest in studying a culture on the cusp of a parallel, earlier change. Yet beyond the bounds of

in Participatory reading in late-medieval England
Open Access (free)
The wall texts of a Percy family manuscript and the Poulys Daunce of St Paul’s Cathedral
Heather Blatt

only are shaped by the people who designed and used them, but shape those people in return.2 Such effects extend also to reading practice. In particular, movement in architectural space further emphasizes the social and physical role of the body in reading practice. Such considerations as these are not restricted, however, to medieval literary culture and architecture alone. Writing about such physical experiences in more modern contexts, digital media theorist Mark Hansen and others emphasize how bodily engagement with the world around a person can create marked

in Participatory reading in late-medieval England
Open Access (free)
Thomas of Erceldoune’s prophecy, Eleanor Hull’s Commentary on the penitential Psalms, and Thomas Norton’s Ordinal of alchemy
Heather Blatt

other reading practices discussed previously, also engaged the interest of critics, artists, and theorists working with digital media, alongside theo- Reading temporally 169 retical ways of understanding time, from the work of Stephen Hawking to that of Giorgio Agamben. Among critics of digital media, how the experience of time in and in response to digital media have gained the most attention. Such critics, seeking to apply concepts drawn from narratology, have sought to explain and analyse temporal phenomenal present in works like video games. Analysing such

in Participatory reading in late-medieval England

Given the significant similarities and differences between the welfare states of Northern Europe and their reactions to the perceived 'refugee crisis' of 2015, the book focuses primarily on the three main cases of Denmark, Sweden and Germany. Placed in a wider Northern European context – and illustrated by those chapters that also discuss refugee experiences in Norway and the UK – the Danish, Swedish and German cases are the largest case studies of this edited volume. Thus, the book contributes to debates on the governance of non-citizens and the meaning of displacement, mobility and seeking asylum by providing interdisciplinary analyses of a largely overlooked region of the world, with two specific aims. First, we scrutinize the construction of the 2015 crisis as a response to the large influx of refugees, paying particular attention to the disciplinary discourses and bureaucratic structures that are associated with it. Second, we investigate refugees’ encounters with these bureaucratic structures and consider how these encounters shape hopes for building a new life after displacement. This allows us to show that the mobility of specific segments of the world’s population continues to be seen as a threat and a risk that has to be governed and controlled. Focusing on the Northern European context, our volume interrogates emerging policies and discourses as well as the lived experiences of bureaucratization from the perspective of individuals who find themselves the very objects of bureaucracies.